October 18, 2020

How to Send Mass Email in Gmail

Reading time about 9 min

We all know Gmail is great for sending emails to individual contacts but what if you want to send mass email? In this article, we show you how to send mass email with Gmail and explain why you’re better off using a dedicated email blast service.

Mass email, also known as bulk email, refers to the sending of promotional email campaigns to a large list of contacts (customers, subscribers, leads, etc.) to achieve a specific goal, such as to promote a product or communicate important information. 

Mass emails are best managed with a dedicated software solution known as an email marketing service — like Sendinblue.

Naturally, in an effort to cut costs, you might consider Gmail mass email. Small business owners often wonder:

Wait, can’t I just use Gmail to send mass email campaigns?” 

Technically, yes, you can send mass email with Gmail. However, as it’s not specifically designed for this purpose, you need to be aware of it limits.

This article will do three things:

  • Teach you one easy way to send mass email with Gmail
  • Explain why Gmail isn’t suited to sending mass emails
  • Introduce you to a better alternative

Ready?

Let’s get started!

How to send mass email in Gmail

For this method, you will need to use both Gmail and Google Drive.

  1. Open a new Google Doc and write your email
  2. Open a Google Sheet (spreadsheet)
  3. Click on Add-ons and then Get add-ons
    Télécharger modules complémentaires dans Google Sheet
  4. Search for Yet Another Mail Merge and download it for free:
  5. Back on the spreadsheet, select Add-ons > Yet Another Mail Merge > Start Mail Merge
  6. Choose whether to import your contacts directly via Gmail or add email addresses manually
  7. Fill out the sender’s name and select your email draft (the first Doc you opened)
  8. Click Send X emails (according to the number of emails you have left to send that day)

Why you shouldn’t send mass email in Gmail

Gmail is great for sending emails to individual contacts but, as you’re about to learn, not so great if you want to send mass email.

If you’re looking to grow your business through email marketing, avoid using Gmail for mass email. Sure, it might save you a bit of money to begin with, but you’re going to run into these problems:

You can’t send more than 500 emails per day with Gmail

Mass email in Gmail is limited. The number of emails you can send and receive within a 24-hour time frame is 500. The number of recipients is also limited to 500. 

For any business with a large subscriber list, the 500 limit gets used up quickly. You may end up having to separate lists and spread campaigns over several days. Obviously, this wouldn’t be very efficient.

Once you hit the limit, you have to wait a full 24 hours before you can resume sending emails from the account. When there are other important emails to be sent, this quickly becomes a major inconvenience.

Send mass email with Sendinblue >>

Deliverability issues with mass email Gmail

Gmail has strict sender guidelines when it comes to mass email. Google will temporarily disable your account if your emails have been marked as spam or if you’ve sent a large number of undeliverable messages to invalid email addresses. 

If your sender address ends in @gmail.com, there’s a high chance that your email will never make it to the inbox. Webmail providers are designed for personal use so when a mass email is sent from one of them, it quickly gets flagged as suspicious. 

It’s best to have a sender address that uses your domain name because using an @gmail.com address for business purposes doesn’t look professional.

Limited design capabilities

Capturing a reader’s attention and making calls-to-action stand out with Gmail’s text-based emails is a struggle. If you want to add graphics, colors, or branding elements to your Gmail mass email you have to rely on add-ons or Chrome extensions. 

Email marketing today has developed itself to a very high standard in terms of design (if you don’t believe us check out these email marketing examples). A plain-text marketing email may not suit your audience or the product you’re trying to sell.

If you want to compete with the best, you need tools that are optimized for email design.

Why you need an email marketing service like Sendinblue

Gmail mass email will put your sender and brand reputation at risk. To be able to send marketing emails to large volumes of contacts, you need a dedicated bulk email service like Sendinblue. 

You can test-drive Sendinblue’s free plan with up to 300 emails a day and unlimited subscribers. No credit card required.

Test-drive Sendinblue for free >>

Still thinking about Gmail mass email? Here are 5 reasons to invest in a professional email marketing service to send mass email.

Better email deliverability

Deliverability refers to the ability of an email to land in a recipient’s inbox and not be sent to the junk mail folder by spam filters.

Deliverability is the most important factor to be taken into account when sending mass email. Between misspelled and expired addresses (tip: avoid these by using a double opt-in process), and anti-spam filters, your email has to overcome numerous obstacles to make it to the inbox.

Sendinblue has rigorous authentication process to keep spammers out and protect the sender reputation of their shared IP addresses. Dedicated IP addresses are available for high-volume mass email senders.

Because email marketing services are specifically designed for mass emails, deliverability will be far better than with Gmail.

Further reading: 8 Easy Ways to Improve Email Deliverability (+ free ebook!)

An email limit that matches your needs

With Gmail you can either send 500 emails per day or one email to 500 different recipients.

If your subscriber list contains more than 500 addresses, you’ll be sending mass email campaigns over several days.

Maybe you don’t have anywhere near 500 contacts right now. That’s ok, but if your sights are set on business growth, expect that your email list will grow bigger in the future.

To overcome this, you can subscribe to an email platform with an email limit that meets your needs and budget.

Sendinblue’s Lite Plan caters include 10,000 monthly email sends and unlimited contact storage.

Email performance analytics

When sending a mass email campaign, you’ll want to know if it was delivered, how many people opened it, and clicked on links, etc. In other words — did the campaign achieve its goal?

Measuring performance is a fundamental aspect of your email marketing strategy. You need to be able to measure the impact and results of your actions in order to track your progress or even compare yourself to other players in your industry.

Gmail doesn’t offer reporting features but an email marketing service will give you all the essential email metrics such as open rate, click rate, bounce rate, delivery rate, unsubscribe rate, and more. 

To give you an idea of how such analytics might be presented, here’s a look at the Sendinblue reporting dashboard:

GDPR compliance

The GDPR is an EU legislation that imposes a number of rules concerning how a person’s data is used and collected. This includes email addresses.

Before sending mass email to someone, you need to have received their permission to do so through a process known as an ‘opt-in’. You also need to include an unsubscribe option in your email footer.

Now if you were sending a mass email in Gmail, you’d have to manually check that everyone on your list has opted in and that all unsubscribes have been removed. That would take a lot of time and one small error could have you breaking the law.

Sendinblue is equipped with a number of features that ensure you stay GDPR-compliant such as subscription forms to acquire consent and unsubscribe links in all emails. Additionally, any unsubscribes and hard bounces are automatically removed from your contact lists.

Having an email marketing service that’s optimized for GDPR best practices will save you a lot of time and worry.

Create attractive and engaging emails

Having a sleek and professional email design will build trust in your brand.

A good email marketing service is equipped with features to aid email design. Most provide responsive email templates and easy-to-use email editors so you can promote your brand with beautifully designed emails – without having to hire a graphic designer or spend hours coding. 

Inserting images, adding buttons that redirect to web pages, ensuring emails display correctly on mobile devices – it’s functionalities like these that can drastically improve your email marketing results. You won’t find them in Gmail though.

Send mass email with Sendinblue

So, now that you know how to send mass email in Gmail, it doesn’t mean you should.

In fact, we strongly recommend that you don’t. 🙂

Having an email marketing solution that’s optimized for mass emails will make your campaigns will look better, deliver to the inbox, and yield better results.

Sendinblue’s email marketing platform gives you all you need to create and manage your mass emails, however big or small your budget. Check out our full range of pricing plans here

Further reading: How to Create a Bulk Email Marketing Campaign: An Unabridged Guide

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